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Letting Agency and Property Management Redress Schemes

Reasons to choose Wilson Browne

The recently decided case of Newham LBC v Sampson Estates Ltd is a stark reminder to letting agents to ensure that they are members of the correct redress schemes.

Since 1 October 2014, the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013 has required that a person who engages in either letting agency or property management work must be a member of a prescribed redress scheme for dealing with complaints “in connection with that work”.

Sampson Estates Ltd undertook both letting agency and property management work but were members of a redress scheme in respect of the letting work only.

Newham LBC considered that this was a breach of the 2013 Act and served a fixed penalty notice.  Initially Sampson Estates Ltd successfully appealed that notice to the FTT, which held that a person needed to join only one of the two types of redress scheme.

The Upper Tribunal allowed an appeal finding that letting agency and property management work were different. The Tribunal confirmed that a person who was engaged in both letting agency work and property management activity needed to ensure that he was covered by a redress scheme (or schemes) for all the work that he did.